SINGAPORE - Temasek Trust, the philanthropic arm of Singapore investment company Temasek, launched the Centre for Impact Investing and Practices (CIIP) on Thursday (June 16) - a first in Asia.
It aims to advance impact investing knowledge and practices throughout the region and around the world.
Impact investments are those made with the intention to generate positive, measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return.
The establishment of CIIP as a non-profit centre marks an important milestone in Temasek Trust's journey to establish impact investing as an effective lever for sustainability, according to a statement by the organisation.
Ms Cheo Hock Kuan, chief executive of Temasek Trust, said: "We believe that impact investing can be mainstreamed to play a critical role in addressing the pressing social and environmental challenges of our time."
She added that CIIP will pool its strengths and collaborate with like-minded partners to build capacity in effective impact measurement and management tools and practices, and to encourage private capital to pursue positive impact outcomes.
Ms Dawn Chan, CEO of CIIP, said the centre will focus on building knowledge assets and enhancing capabilities, championing credible and practical industry standards, and convening stakeholders to bring about positive action towards impact investing.
As part of its mission, CIIP also launched its inaugural report, Scaling Impact in Asia: Achieving Purpose and Profit, which was a collaboration between information technology services and consulting firm Accenture and Singapore Management University.
The report not only uncovers the unique challenges and significant opportunities to drive impact in Asia, but also extends the scope of existing research by providing tangible, real-life examples from practitioners on the ground.
Among those who attended the virtual launch was Mr Marcos Neto, director of the Sustainable Finance Hub under the United Nations Development Programme, who also delivered the keynote address.
He highlighted how incentives in the financial system should be aligned with societal goals that included the need to realise sustainable development goals.
Mr Neto also expressed hope that the impact investing community will lead the way to a new normal, providing an alternative to the environmental, social and governance approach for investors wanting to intentionally direct capital towards positive sustainable development outcomes.